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Minimum Salaries for Locals and Foreigners in Thailand
The Minimum Wages for Foreigners Working in Thailand
Considering finding a job in Thailand? Are you wondering what the minimum wages in Thailand are? It is important to know that the Thai federal government has different fixed minimum wages for foreigners working in Thailand which are considerably greater than the minimum salaries in Thailand for locals.
There are 4 different types of minimum wages in Thailand, depending on the person’s country of origin.
- 50,000 Baht/month: Western European Countries, Australia, Canada, Japan, and the USA
- 45,000 Baht/month: Taiwan, Hong Kong, South Korea, and Singapore
- 35,000 Baht/month: Eastern European Countries, Asian Countries, Central American Countries, Mexico, South American Countries, Turkey, Russia and South Africa
- 25,000 Baht/month: African Countries, Cambodia, Myanmar, Vietnam and Laos
Depending on their wage, foreign workers are required to pay personal income tax (progressive, the very first 150,000 Baht/year are exempted, then scaling up, i.e. 5% for 150,000-250,000, 10% for 250,000-350,000 and so on) and contribute to the social fund (health insurance, 5% of salary, maximum 750 Baht/month, payable 50% by staff member and 50% by employer).
Educators are exempted from the minimum wage requirements. However, an academic institute (school, college, university) must hold a permit from the Ministry of Education. Generally, the minimum salary for English teachers in Thailand remains in the 20,000-35,000 Baht variety (public schools pay in the 20k variety, independent schools in the 30k variety). For college/ university teachers the pay range is a lot higher, you might get 35,000 Baht teaching first-year bachelor students in a private school or 60,000 Baht for a masters course in a private college.
Numerous companies ignore the minimum income for foreigners
There you have the minimum salaries, black on white. The sad reality is that a lot of companies do not care about this law. This is not just for Thai businesses but also foreign-owned organizations that might offer you a job with an income that is below the base pay for your country of origin.
The Minimum Wages For Thai People
On November 22, 2016, the Thai cabinet approved the recommendations of the Central Wage Committee to increase the day basic wage by an additional 5 to 10 Thai Baht (THB) for 69 provinces with effect from January 1, 2017. This will be the first big change in minimum wages in Thailand since January 1, 2013. Formerly, the minimum wage was THB 300 (US$ 8.39) per day throughout the country. This minimum wage levels will be kept in the eight provinces of Trang, Ranong, Narathiwat, Pattani, Yala, Sing Buri, Chumphon, and Nakhon Si Thammarat.
In the following 49 provinces, the new daily minimum wage will be 305 Baht:
Chai Nat, Lop Buri, Nakhon Nayok, Sa Kaeo, Prachuap Khiri Khan, Samut Songkhram, Chanthaburi, Trat, Lamphun, Phayao, Sukhothai, Uttaradit, Bung Kan, Nakhon Phanom, Mae Hong Son, Lampang, Nan, Tak, Kanchanaburi, Ratchaburi, Suphan Buri, Phetchaburi, Phatthalung, Satun, Kamphaeng Phet, Phichit, Phrae, Phetchabun, Uthai Thani, Sakon Nakhon, Kalasin, Maha Sarakham, Roi Et, Buri Ram, Surin, Amnat Charoen, Ubon Ratchathani, Ang Thong, Loei, Nong Bua Lamphu, Mukdahan, Yasothon, Chiang Rai, Phitsanulok, Udon Thani, Chaiyaphum, Si Sa Ket, Nakhon Sawan and Nong Khai.
In the following 13 provinces, the new everyday base pay will be THB 308:
Khon Kaen, Chiang Mai, Saraburi, Chachoengsao, Krabi, Phangnga, Nakhon Ratchasima, Prachin Buri, Chon Buri, Rayong, Surat Thani (and Samui), Songkhla, and Ayutthaya.
In the following seven provinces, the brand-new everyday base pay will be THB 310:
Bangkok, Nonthaburi, Pathum Thani, Samut Prakan, Nakhon Pathom, Samut Sakhon and Phuket.
Employers who are caught paying anything below the minimum will have to pay a fine of 100,000 Baht and/or get arrested and put in prison for 6 months.
No occupations are exempted from the minimum wage and so even the person serving the lift in Fortune Tower, Bangkok, the parking attendants at the Big C or the chicks in the Robinson in your location are qualified for the minimum wage in Thailand.
Having said that you must know that law enforcement in Thailand is not always efficient therefore the best example for companies breaking the guideline are Thai employees operating at 7-elevens and mini marts for around 6,000 baht, particularly in upcountry Thailand.
Although corruption is the huge problem to effectively implement a countrywide minimum wage in Thailand (just like the minimum wage for foreigners), things look a bit various if you look at wages for Thai people holding degrees.
In Thailand there are minimum salaries depending on the level of degree:
- Master Degree Holders: 25,000 Baht per month
- Bachelor Degree Holders: 15,000 Baht per month
You might think that’s peanuts compared to exactly what you get in your country, nevertheless, bear in mind how cheap life in Thailand can be. Locals can live conservatively on a 5,000 Baht monthly budget, even if they receive the minimum wage in Thailand.
Feel free to post your ideas in the comment section below!
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